Ache and pains – there’s no way to avoid them. It seems the more we age, the more health issues keep us up at night, including the youngins. Literally speaking, charley horses, leg cramps, and restless leg syndrome are killing notions of a good night’s sleep.
Prescriptions and over-the-counter meds can make a big difference, but people find home remedies to be effective too. If you can pinpoint the cause of your leg discomfort, it can help you figure out the best home remedy for your case. WebMd states some leg pain sources include pregnancy, dehydration, overexertion, or mineral deficiencies.
There are a few steps you can take to prevent cramps or ward off the pain without running to the drug store. Jump below for a few ideas on battling leg afflictions.
Just Use Soap
What does bathing have to do with anything? Well, in this, case slipping a bar of dry soap – Irish Spring seems to be the standard – in between the sheets does the trick. Users swear by this folk remedy for relieving leg cramps at bedtime. The magic seems to lie in the fragrant evaporation coming from the soap, which contains beneficial oils. Even Dr. Oz did a segment on this one.
Stay Watered Down
One of the most common reasons for painful muscle cramps is dehydration. It’s easy to forget to drink water during the normal course of your day, but your body’s made up of water. Drink it!
At the other end of the scale is caffeine and alcohol, which contribute to dehydration by electrolyte loss. Try cutting back or at least avoid them, especially when you’re close to hitting the pillow.
This may sound counterintuitive, but moving the muscles in the affected legs can actually help. Tightened muscles and nerves can cause leg cramps, so try calf or hamstring stretches. With restless leg syndrome – which is different than cramping – movement relieves pain.
Prevention Magazine cited an interview with Dr. Rachel Salas, a neurologist at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, who spoke on the benefits of yoga for people with restless leg syndrome. Symptoms and sleep improved after just a few weeks of activity.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Drinking a little bit of apple cider vinegar in a mug of warm water can help relieve leg pains. Livestrong touts the minerals in the tonic drink for soothing aches. It’s recommended to use an organic version, and to add a touch of honey to help with the taste.
If drinking ACV doesn’t suit your palate, you can also make a compress or bath to help your achy legs. Simply soak a warm washcloth in apple cider vinegar and wrap it around your sore leg. Add some to your bath water and let it absorb into the skin for some relief.
Enrich Your Diet
Foods high in potassium and magnesium can give your mineral stores a boost. Bananas, dates, whole grains, yogurt, and fish are all mineral-rich foods. You might find that small changes in your diet have a huge impact on your leg pains.
Consult with your medical team to find the cause of your leg woes before settling on any remedy. Underlying conditions may require a different scope of treatment. But for acute problems and you’re in need of immediate relief, why not grab a bar of soap and a bottle of apple cider vinegar?
What do you do to abate leg pain attacks or restless leg syndrome? Have you ever tried the soap trick or other home remedies? Tell us in the comments!